American Anodyne
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American Anodyne

Atlanta, Georgia, United States | SELF

Atlanta, Georgia, United States | SELF
Band Americana Country




"American Anodyne"

Het internet is net een schoolplein waar de laatste nieuwtjes het snelst rondgaat. Dus zie ik mij als plicht onze lezers eens bij te praten over nieuwkomer American Anodyne. Een frisse groep van vier muzikanten uit Atlanta, Georgia, die een aantal maanden geleden de debuut-ep “So, You Want To Be A Bullfighter met zeven songs heeft uitgebracht. Muziek die levendig rockt. De heren Erick Jones (zang, gitaar, mondharmonica), Chris Thacker (elektrische gitaar) zorgen voor een gezonde dosis gitaar power met een heerlijke twang, die eindeloos voortjakkert. Drummer Kevin Rainwater zorgt samen met bassist Gregg Shapiro voor een stevige ondergrond. Rafelige altcountryrock, die zowel akoestisch als elektrisch in mijn oren wordt gespoten.

“So, You Want To Be A Bullfighter” is een album met alleen maar klappers, snedige en grofkorrelige rockliedjes met knallende hooks. Sleutelnummer van deze plaat is Bastard Sons Of The New Depression, een ingetogen liedje over de huidige economische crisis: “I’m out of work, out of luck, uninsured and I’m pretty much stuck” . Of de formatie American Anodyne in Nederland, een land dat nu erg gevoelig is voor singer-songwriters, voet aan grond zal krijgen valt nog te bezien. Met deze ep zend het kwartet in ieder geval een uitstekend signaal uit. Hoog tijd om eens kennis te maken met deze gasten.

De nummers zijn beluisteren via:

(Johan Schoenmakers) - Alt Country Forum

"American Anodyne, "Wilco Cyndi""

This is straightforward, no-holds-barred country rock “soaked in moonshine and forged from gold.”

“And melded in the furnace of Appalachia.”

So it is that American Anodyne, a little old country rock band from Atlanta, Georgia describes its party-ready brand of music.

We can’t find any kind of bio about the four boys in the band but we can sure ’nuff tell you what we hear in “Wilco Cyndi,” our Free MP3 of the Day from their album, So You Wanna Be A Bullfighter.

How ’bout a voice that reminds us of Steve Earle, lyrics that remind us of Little Feat and a groove that would put Omar and the Howlers to shame.

That there is a pretty fine recommendation…listen up and then go buy their whole damn record. -

"So, You Want To Be A Bullfighter..."

So, You Want To Be A Bullfighter is the North Atlanta band American Anodyne's first release. The group's official bio states: "Soaked in moonshine and forged from gold, American Anodyne is a band melded in the furnace of Appalachia. These truly southern gentlemen are creating a brand of Americana reminiscent of '70's outlaw country while embracing the sentiments of modern times. American Anodyne's music convey tales of small town life and portrays the hardship of living in the 'new depression'. With songs depicting a lust for the open road, heartbreaks, and handguns their no-holds-bar style of portraying life in the south is honest and authentic."

Members of American Anodyne include: Erick Jones (vocals & guitar), Chris Thacker (lead guitar), Kevin Rainwater (drums) and Justin Minchew (bass). "Radio Rainwater" opens the CD with a radio broadcast intro on a rainy day. "Wilco Cyndi", a foot-on-the-pedal rocker, tells a story of Georgia red clay, Novas, a mean woman and "two greasy spoons a day".

"The Anniversary" counts as a great country song from a sad lady's perspective that stands as a fine piece of songwriting, and Thacker's emotive guitar solo is worth noting. "Wheels" emerges as an open-road, adrenaline-laced tune that reveals an addiction to passing miles. "Get In the Car Laura Jane" conjures images of winding roads that lead towards to Texas.

Shit-kicking moxie propels "Call My Brother" that tells the story of a hardworking man on a Friday night of hi-jinx. "Bastard Sons of the New Depression" operates as the centerpiece song on So, You Want To Be A Bullfighter. "I'm out of work/Out of luck/Uninsured/And I'm pretty much stuck" are the opening lines to this song. This composition captures the spirit of the world's 'New Depression'. This one hits home. I don't know one person who wouldn't like this tune. Every line is stone truth...

The final track, "El Dorado, Dark Blue" casts an indigo light from this sparse acoustic landscape. Quiet desperation echoes through this tune that paints a story about leaving the past behind. American Anodyne possess a rare degree of soul and storytelling in these dark, and depressive economic times. Great stuff.

James Calemine - Swampland

"Amerikabrev vol. 6"

"So, you want to be a bullfighter...", tja det er vel omtrent like vanskelig det som det å slå igjennom musikalsk i en sjanger som kvalitetsmessig aldri har hatt flere dyktige artister enn akkurat i disse tider. American Anodyne fra Atlanta, Georgia kan virke som et litt uferdig band, men med et stort potensiale. Låtene deres er melodiøse og catchy og fungerer bra på et album, men høres ut som de kanskje fungerer enda bedre i livesammenheng. De balanserer samtidig hårfint på en linje med litt honky-tonk på den ene siden og streit country på den andre. Valget de har tatt, den gyldne middelvei ispedd litt energisk rock'n roll og melodiøs countryrocksound gjør at de kan holde hodene høyt hevet og være stolt av deres debutalbum.

Albumet inneholder tekstmessig alle de klassiske ingrediensene fra livet langs veien, klisjefylt kan man godt si, men de blir formidlet på et ærlig og ekte vis via låtene her. Bandet ramser opp på sine nettsider at de er influert av Uncle Tupelo, Steve Earle og Ryan Adams, dette kommer også tydelig fram i låtene på albumet, men jeg synes musikken deres ofte har vel så mye elementer fra artister som Two Cow Garage, Bottle Rockets og Chris Knight. Anbefaler en lytt via FB-siden til bandet, der kan du faktisk høre alle syv låtene fra dette albumet.

Anbefalte låter: Wheels, El Dorado Dark Blue og Wilco Cyndi. Albumet finnes også digitalt for kjøp i iTunes.
- No Deal Music

"American Anodyne, "Call My Brother""

It’s been a long time since we’ve heard a better working man’s party song that American Anodyne‘s “Call My Brother.”

“I might get drunk tonight, get in a fight, ’til I hear the cops enroute.
Get ‘em up off their lazy asses, it’ll do ‘em some good to get out.
At the end of the day, in a town this size, there ain’t too much to shout about.
I might just get drunk tonight, call my brother to bail me out.”

So sings American Anodyne’s Erick Jones with the help of Chris Thacker, Kevin Rainwater and about a hunnerd of his crazy-assed friends. It’s a rough around the edges but in the grand tradition of Robert Earl Keen‘s “The Road Goes On Forever,” it’s a hell of a party song.

We could go on forever but it’ll be better if you just download the song and play it for your brother. He’ll need to know what you’re talking about when you sing it to him over the phone this Saturday night. -

"American Anodyne - So, you want to be a bullfighter"

Country music has fractured over the years, so much so that it now falls into several categories.

There’s the old standards, what kids today probably call Classic County, sung with passion by guys named Cash, Jones, Jennings and Shaver.

There’s the folkier side, which I like to lovingly refer to as Protest Country, which features songs like “For What It’s Worth” or “Ohio.”

There’s Alternative Country, which is dirtier and edgier than Classic Country, but it mines similar territory.

And then there’s New Country, which is to say, mostly a big old steaming pile of crap.

American Anodyne are a country band, there’s no doubt. On their debut album, So, You Want To Be A Bullfighter, the Atlanta,
GA-based band offer a primer on what real country music sounds like.

Lead-off song “Wilco Cyndi” is a rollicking barnburner that will quickly get you tapping your boot heel and feeling good. The boys follow that up with a dark slice of classic country, “The Anniversary,” that delves deep into lost love and cheating hearts.

Then it’s right back to the fast stuff with “Wheels,” a gleeful blast of independence that begs for you to sing along with the windows down, driving fast.

All I really want is wheels
Someone on the slide and someone on the steel
Someone to hold the bottom down
And a long white line leading out of town
It’s not that I don’t want to hang around
And it ain’t that I don’t like this town
It’s just that when the sun breaks over those hills
All I really want is wheels

American Anodyne refuse to be boxed in, though. Like a deck of cards in the hands of a professional trickster, the band closes the album with a four-song set that just makes you smile. There’s the should-be concert anthem, “Get in the Car Laura Jane,” with its wonderful lyrics:

You blew out your tire just over the state line
No help for hours and you started to cry
Then a dented old pickup pulled off to the side
You probably knew better, but you still got inside
I told you my name and you faked half a smile
You didn’t say more than ten words for two hundred miles
I could tell you didn’t think too much of me,
But this is my truck girl, no one rides for free

“Call My Brother” is a glorious old-school country sing-along anthem that would have ruled the radio back in the heyday of The Oak Ridge Boys or Alabama.

I might get drunk tonight, get in a fight
Til I hear the cops in route
Get ‘em up off their lazy asses
It’ll do ‘em some good to get out
At the end of the day in a town this size
There ain’t too much to shout about
I might just get drunk tonight
And call my brother to bail me out

The disc closes with two stark reminders of the dangerous days in which we live, and the important role that music plays in reminding us how high the stakes remain. “Bastard Sons of the New Depression” is a kick-in-the-teeth ballad that bemoans the plight of the working man.

Mother look at me now, I’m out of work and I don’t know how to get
Underpaid for all my labor
Pop if you could see me now
Caught in a world lost in regression
Another bastard son of the new depression

“El Dorado, Dark Blue” is something altogether different.

Wake up in a cold grey cell, you don’t remember your name
Wake up in your woman’s arms & you feel about the same
Everyday is the same routine, the same wretched waste of time
& if you don’t get out, you’re going to leave this world behind
Your grand plans fell apart at 17, when Jenni broke the news to you
Time to trade in that two-seater on a family sedan, El Dorado, dark blue
Instead of the wind in your hair & the open road keeping you young and alive
You got a ring, a mortgage, a stroller and a dog, and the same old 9 to 5

“El Dorado” has echoes of Bruce Springsteen, especially “The River,” but there’s something darker there too, maybe a sliver of Chris Knight’s working class blues or a portrait of life squandered, courtesy of Steve Earle.

It’s a haunting song, no doubt, told with haunting simplicity, complete with an ironic twist of hope. It’s only after the narrator confesses that his Jenni is gone, three years come May, that he reasons it’s time to start living again. It’s not clear if Jenni died or left him for another, less pessimistic man, but there is just enough kick in the pants left to get him up and off his duff and back into the front seat of that old El Dorado, dark blue.

Tough stuff from a band that hits home hard. But true country fans wouldn’t have it any other way.

Suffice to say, American Anodyne is Essential Listening. - Nine Bullets


So, you want to be a bullfighter... (EP, April 2011)



Soaked in moonshine and forged from gold, American Anodyne is a band melded in the furnace of Appalachia. These truly southern gentlemen are creating a brand of Americana reminiscent of ‘70’s outlaw country while embracing the sentiments of modern times. American Anodyne’s music convey tales of small town life and portrays the hardship of living in the ‘new depression'. With songs depicting a lust for the open road, heartbreaks, and handguns their no-holds-barred style of portraying life in the south is honest and authentic. Their first EP “So, you want to be a bullfighter…” was released in April of 2011 and features the tracks “Call My Brother” and “Bastard Sons of the New Depression.”

The concept of American Anodyne was created about 4am on the night of January 9th, 2010 under cold, clear skies in the sleepy town of Dahlonega, Georgia. Erick Jones (lead vocals / rhythm guitar) and Chris Thacker (lead guitar / backing vocals) had been doing some drinking, some picking, and some talking about the idea of putting a band together for quite a while, but on that faithful night the two decided that they would definitely create a musical entity, make a record, and hit the road in the spring.

The very next morning Thacker received a call to go on tour for the better part of 2010, but all things happen for a reason.

Erick kept writing, kept performing, and kept honing the body of work that has become the foundation for American Anodyne. He and Thacker kept in contact during the duration of Thacker’s tour schedule, with Erick sending him song ideas and musical concepts, and continued their dialogue about a future project. “I had all these songs that I needed to bounce off someone and Thacker has always been an objective critic, an honest critic, and we’ve always had a great working repoire”, said Jones. Upon Thacker’s return from the road in the fall of 2010 he and Jones reconvened and began work in earnest to produce the sound that is American Anodyne.

Enter Kevin Rainwater (drums). Kevin returned from Asheville, North Carolina in the fall of 2010 and fell right in with Erick and Thacker. “We were on the hunt for a drummer, and had auditioned a couple people, but none of them had the feel we were looking for,” said Thacker, who had played with Rainwater for six years in the band Big City Sunrise. “Rainwater has a way of carrying the vibe that very few drummers have. He pushes the music over the top when it needs to be pushed, and he brings it down when the song needs to breathe.” With three-quarters of a band in place rehearsals started to happen on a semi-regular basis and the concept was beginning to evolve into a genuine sound. “We were all excited about the direction we were headed in. It was thoughtful, a little tongue-in-cheek, and somewhat rowdy. It’s definitely a reflection of us; rough and tumble with a big ol’ heart pinned on our sleeve,” said Rainwater.

January 10th, of 2011 American Anodyne headed to WizKid Sound in Atlanta with longtime friend Mike O’Connor to record their debut EP “So, you want to be a bullfighter…”. Almost a year to the day after postponing their project, Erick, Thacker, and Rainwater were headed to the studio to make a record. “We were all really excited but I’d be lying if I said we weren’t a little scared. We had templates of songs, a few ideas, a couple of months of rehearsal, and no bass player,” says Thacker, “We were all curious to see what would happen and knew we had to make a leap of faith and get these songs tracked.”

There is nothing better in the world than a good friend and American Anodyne had an abundance of help from their friends in the Atlanta music community to create “So, you want to be a bullfighter…” “We borrowed amps, microphones, and guitars from all over town. We used drums from two or three different bands all piled together to make a kind of Frankenstein drum kit,” say Rainwater. Another longtime friend of the band, Gregg Shapiro (bass player for Sonia Leigh), came to the studio to lend his talents to the EP. “We didn’t have a bass player and I’d played shows with Gregg over the years. He’s always at the top of the list when you talk about great bass players,” said Thacker, “I called him up and asked if he could help us out. I might have pleaded actually,” laughs Thacker, “He showed up with a few hours to spare before a gig and killed it. I’ve witness people work efficiently in the studio but never anything like this. It took him maybe two hours to lay down the bass tracks without ever hearing the songs. He’s as good as they get.” After seven days of tracking, mixing, and mastering “So, you want to be a bullfighter…” was a finished product. It’s an honest record of pure emotion, first takes, and late nights that really captures the pureness of making music with friends.

The next move for American Anodyne was to start playing shows, but they needed a bass player. Thacker had a late night conversation